Is Bone Tomahawk Based On A True Story? A Novel Adaptation Or An Original Tale?

A grim tale blending the Western genre along with intriguing elements of horror and action, Bone Tomahawk is perceived to be a shiny gem. It is the recipient of six out of the ten nominated accolades for screenplay and direction. Though S. Craig Zahler’s directorial Bone Tomahawk is a low-budget Hollywood thriller, it has surpassed several exorbitant budgeted Hollywood thrillers. The credit for its immense success naturally goes to the compelling script and phenomenal acting skills demonstrated by the cast ensemble.

While Bone Tomahawk boasts eye-popping, nerve-wracking horror elements, its characteristic highlight remains its realistic storyline. Due to the same, fans of this enchanting tale are wondering whether Bone Tomahawk is based on a true story. However, the reality is a stretch away from the perception. Here’s how.

Is Bone Tomahawk Based On A True Story?

Zahler has reportedly jotted down over forty screenplays including The Brigands Of Rattleborge. Despite that, only one script was approved and produced, contributing to Zachler’s imminent agitation. The author and director, after navigating several hardships, Craig decided to follow his manager and best friend, Dallas Sonnier’s advice and began working on his debut film, Bone Tomahawk. Initially, due to budget constraints and Craig’s no-compromising attitude, the film had to weave through a dire crisis. 

Somehow, due to Zachler’s persistence, the film juggled its way out of near cataclysm and premiered on October 1, 2015, in all its 132-minute glory. Despite the long runtime, Zachler mentioned that he had to trim the script and modify the timeline of the film multiple times. After being initially premiered at the Fantastic Fest on October 1, 2015, Bone Tomahawk received a theatrical release twenty days later on October 25. 

Fans have been left wondering whether the Western thriller is based on a true story ever since. Well, the answer is an astounding “no”. Bone Tomahawk isn’t based on a true story. Rather, it is adapted from Craig Zahler’s novel, Wraiths of the Broken Land. 

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Is Bone Tomahawk Adapted From A Novel?

Yes, Zahler’s directorial debut, Bone Tomahawk, is a cinematic adaptation of his ninety-thousand-word-long novel, Wraiths of the Broken Land. In 2014, after considering Sonnier’s proposition, Zahler reluctantly agreed to go along with a plan. However, he soon realized that his extensively wide novel couldn’t become a ninety-minute film on a low budget. He then went on to write a “rescue Western” along the same realm, considering the same characters.

Craig has admitted to being a die-hard fan of the Western genre and aspired to conjure a film that would do justice to it. He finally got a chance to witness his dream come true due to Sonnier and is now the proud director and writer of an award-winning film.

Bone Tomahawk Film Overview

Zahler, through his “sparse” storytelling, aims to portray a small-town sheriff, Franklin Hunt (Kurt Russell) who finds himself at a crossroads with a cannibalistic clan. Brigands Purvis (David Arquette) and Buddy (Sid Haig) are ambushed by Deputy Chicory (Richard Jenkins), the latter is killed in an encounter and the former is sent under Hunt’s jurisdiction. The temperamental officer shoots Purvis when he attempts to escape and sends his junior officer to fetch the town’s doctor. However, he mistakenly brings Samantha O’Dwyer (Lili Simmons), the doctor’s daughter.

After Samantha and Franklin cross paths, they soon figure out a trend in the recent killings the town has recently witnessed. With Chicory, Samantha and Franklin team up against the clan that brutally slaughters people to make a meal out of them, havoc ensues. The atrocious clan gets more active and more people start to lose their lives to bloodthirsty humans. Meanwhile, Franklin and his team are left to deduce a plan and stop the horror. Now, only if it were so easy.

Bone Tomahawk remains a seamless and sensational blend of horror, gore and thrill. The debate between graphic Western and plain Western remains unsettled though.

Is Bone Tomahawk Based On A True Story FAQs 

1. What Is The Bone Tomahawk Film About?

It is a horror thriller film centred around a sheriff who captures suspicious and disastrous activities going on in his town.

2. Who Is The Creator Of The Bone Tomahawk Movie?

The film is written and directed by S. Craig Zahler.

3. Is Bone Tomahawk Based On A True Story?

No, it isn’t based on a true story.

4. Is Bone Tomahawk Adapted From A Novel?

Yes, it is adapted from Zahler’s novel, Wraiths of the Broken Land.

5. Is A Trailer Available For Bone Tomahawk?

Yes, there is a trailer available for Bone Tomahawk.

6. Where To Watch The Bone Tomahawk Film?

You can either rent or buy the film from Amazon.

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